More than 100 Bangladeshis including cancer patients have remained stuck at Benapole check-post for not having Covid-19 negative certificates while returning from India.
The immigration police said, on November 19, the government gave instruction to passengers returning from abroad to get Covid-19 negative certificates within seven days.
The certificate will be valid for 72 hours, it added.
Benapole check-post was closed to the returnees without Covid-19 certificate on Friday following the direction.
The stranded passengers said they went to India with a Covid-19 negative certificate but they did not know they would have to get the same certificate from India to enter Bangladesh.
Benapole Checkpost Immigration Health Officer Dr Bichitra Mallik said, "We are unable to go against the government direction."
However, a special direction may come regarding those who reached the check-post on Friday, Benapole International Checkpost Immigration Officer-in-Charge Ahsan Habib said.
On November 15, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said passengers returning home from foreign countries must show Covid-19 negative certificates at the immigration.
"They will have to go into quarantine for 14 days upon their return, else."
A 5.85 kilometer stretch of the Padma Bridge's main structure became visible on Friday after the installation of the 39th span.
Only two more spans are left to be set up to complete the 6.15 kilometer bridge.
The "2-D" span was installed on pillars 10 and 11 at Jazira point, Dewan Abdul Kader, executive engineer and project manager (main bridge), said.
"The remaining two spans will be set up within December 15."
The construction of the Padma Bridge started in 2014 and the megastructure is expected to be open to the public in 2021.
Also read: 4.5 km Padma Bridge now visible
The confirmed Covid-19 cases across the globe surpassed 61 million on Friday.
A total of 61,026,993 people have been infected with the virus so far. And there have been 1,432,817 Covid-19 deaths, according to John Hopkins University data.
Experts are calling the spike in death and infection, in the past few weeks, the start of a second wave.
Covid-19 has hit 191 countries since the first cases were reported from China in December last year.
The US has reported 12,883,846 cases since the start of the pandemic.
And the country's fatalities have climbed to 263,455 and it is averaging more than 1,650 deaths per day.
To avoid any traces of Covid-19 that might be lurking on surfaces, Americans have been wiping down groceries, wearing surgical gloves in public, and leaving mail packages out for an extra day or two.
But experts say the national fixation on scrubbing can sometimes be overkill, reports AP.
Brazil has the world's second-highest fatality now, after the US, with 171,460 deaths.
India is the third-worst affected country with 135,715 deaths.
Bangladesh reported 20 more Covid-19 deaths up to early Friday. The country also reported 2,273 infections at that time, taking the caseload to 458,711.
Bangladesh is once again showing an upward trend of new cases.
So far, 6,544 patients have succumbed to Covid-19 in the country, and the death rate stands at 1.43%, said the Directorate General of Health Services.
The health authorities recorded 18 new dengue cases in 24 hours until Friday morning.
Currently, 82 dengue patients are receiving treatment at hospitals across the county.
The Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) said 69 of the patients are taking treatment in Dhaka hospitals.
Health authorities confirmed 1,105 dengue cases since January and 1,017 patients have recovered.
Three confirmed dengue-related deaths were reported this year.
Reports of six dengue-related deaths have been sent to the IEDCR, which has so far reviewed four cases.
According to official figures, 101,354 dengue cases and 179 deaths were recorded in Bangladesh last year.
Dengue fever was first reported in Bangladesh in 2000 and it claimed 93 lives. In three years, the fatality number almost fell to zero.
However, the mosquito-borne viral infection struck again in 2018, killing 26, and infecting 10,148 people.
Read Also: Dengue cases spike in November
Bangladesh on Friday reported 20 coronavirus deaths and 2,292 new cases in 24 hours until morning amid apprehensions of another major virus outbreak in the winter months.
Currently, the country’s caseload stands at 458,711 with 6,544 fatalities. The mortality rate is 1.43 percent, according to a handout from the Directorate General of Health Services.
So far 81.46 percent of the patients (373,676) have recovered, including 2,223 between Thursday and Friday, the health authorities said.
Coronavirus cases were first reported in China in December last year. Bangladesh reported its first cases on March 8 and the first death on March 18.
The country has carried out 2,729,580 tests so far, including 16,378 new ones, and 13.88 percent of the patients turned out to be positive.
Data released by the government show that Dhaka division has recorded 3,487 deaths, followed by Chattogram with 1,253.
The confirmed Covid-19 cases across the globe surpassed 61 million on Friday, according to data compiled by John Hopkins University (JHU).
A total of 61,026,993 people infected with the virus while 1,432,817 of them died so far.
Coronavirus is affecting 191 countries and territories around the world.
The United States has recorded 12,883,846 since the start of the pandemic followed by India and Brazil while the country’s death toll climbed to 263,455.
The country is averaging more than 1,650 deaths per day, reports AP.
Brazil has the world's second-highest COVID-19 death toll with 171,460 deaths, after that of the United States while India occupied third place with 135,715 deaths.
With the number of deaths and infected cases rising again for the past weeks, specialists alert the start of a second wave.
Although results from Covid-19 vaccine trials by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna raised hopes, experts find big challenges for Bangladesh to avail of benefits from the two vaccines due to its existing poor cold chain.
Health Services Division Secretary Abdul Mannan said the government is not thinking about procuring the vaccines of Pfizer and Moderna as those are not suitable for Bangladesh due to temperature-related problems.
“Nine organisations in the world are in the final stage of producing Covid vaccines, and we’re in touch with six of them. we’ll buy any suitable vaccine from where we get it earlier,” he said.
The government has been saying that it will procure a vaccine as soon as one is available. It signed an MoU with the Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bangladesh's Beximco Pharmaceuticals to get three crore doses of the vaccine developed by Oxford University.
But in a statement last week, AstraZeneca and Oxford University acknowledged a manufacturing error that is raising questions about preliminary results of their experimental COVID-19 vaccine.
The developers of Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine have proposed combining it with the vaccine of AstraZeneca when conducting trials to evaluate the increase in efficacy.
"Current full dose AstraZeneca regimen resulted in 62% efficacy. If they go for a new clinical trial, we suggest trying a regimen of combining the AZ shot with the Sputnik V human adenoviral vector shot to boost efficacy. Combining vaccine may prove important for revaccinations," the developers tweeted.
Meanwhile, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and Hetero, one of India’s leading generic pharmaceutical companies, have agreed to produce over 100 million doses per year of Sputnik V, the world’s first registered vaccine against coronavirus, in India.
They hope to start production early next year.